Not One Night

“What did I tell you my name is?”

Confusion flitted quick in his eyes. It was overthrown by the slight lift of an eyebrow, a left tilt of his supple, ravished-pink, full lips.


Nkiru? Are you for real right now?! I tried to rein the humor Mental’s response sparked but it barely stayed contained for a minute. Laughter burst cascading and glorious like bubbling water lifting the cover off boiling starchy rice. Damn Lawd, I thought; before I surrendered to it, let it shake the pits of my stomach. Finally it calmed to chuckles and I wiped a leaked tear off my cheek, lifted my back off the wall.

Wait. We not gonn’ talk about this? How long have we wanted to be called Nkiru? Do we want to be called Nkiru? Damn it girl! Are you making this shit up as we bloody go?!

My stomach contracted as I shook my head, leaned forward and into muscular chest. Mental was going to kill me with laughter or I was never going to die. My tiny fist thumped a beat just above his breast as the second wave of laughter rose, overtook me. This time it didn’t stop till tears were freely flowing down my cheeks, my ribs were aching, and my arms were clutching my aching sides. Finally I looked up; hiccuping and struggling to fetch mouthfulls of air. I imagined I looked a beautiful huge mess. Aaw, poor poor Monday; saddled with wild laughter and Yaki curls tickling his exposed chest. Which of the gods had he offended? I looked up and into his eyes, giggled. There was patience in the relaxed mien of his face, and many things I could not see through my still-teary vision danced in his eyes.

“I take it Nkiru is not your name?”

“It is. Now.”

He frowned, pouted his lips, and I imagined trouble swirling in his head. I grinned. My signature shiny-white-teeth-twinkle-in-my-eyes-little-happy-puppy grin has been known to stop many an event; such as nonsensical moonlight interrogations that won’t matter by dawn. He blinked once, twice; rolled his eyes, sighed.

“You haven’t asked for my name.”

“Monday”, I said.

“That’s today”

“Yes. And your new name”

He frowned… he didn’t understand. I smiled. He didn’t need to understand. I poked his chest with my index finger, it felt very good. Strong, sturdy, and it vibrated; just like grandpa’s old rocking chair. I looked into his eyes, smiled, spoke with a voice so low it could only be heard within our heightened cocoon.

 “You’ll want to love me. You mustn’t”

He frowned and a puzzled expression clouded his eyes. I turned right and out of his arms, stepped away from the dark nest created by the wide leaves of the glorious Agbowo Shopping Complex tree. Away from the place that was perfumed by pheromones and wild sex.

In two strides he caught up with me and I smiled. Though he walked beside me he also strolled with me. In the thick drizzle lazily strolling down my left thigh from my deliciously sensitive, puffed venus….

#DupeWrites #TaleTuesday #Fiction

Death by Valentine… an almost-scary story

Hail Mary full of… Oh fuck… Ah, we didn’t die… But we just swore in the middle of… Oh shit…

I was on an okada (commercial motorcycle) from Ojota to Berger and trying to pray rather unsuccessfully. I was in desperate, very critical need of God’s help but bloody cars and trucks were speeding past, leaving the bikeman and I in winds so strong I felt the bike wobbling and threatening to throw us to the gods of the express.

My heart was doing gbim gbim gbim in my chest and a voice in my head was writing an evil epitaph: Dupe was a bright girl snatched in her prime by the vagaries of juvenile delinquency…. Chai Gawd🙆‍♀️! Pliss na! I wii nuh falatine boy again. Oluwa dakunnnnn 🙏🥺🥺🥺

It was 4:30p.m and pockets of traffic building on roads below the bridge warned that I should not consider getting off the bike for a bus. I needed to get home at least 10 minutes before 5p.m when Mum and Dad would be back from work. I had to undress, pack in the clothes I had dried that morning, and look like I’d had a very boring went-nowhere day.

I wasn’t sure what I was more scared: dying on the express or dying at the hands of Mummy if I arrived in my spaghetti top and bootcut jeans to meet them already at home🙆‍♀️. It felt like death was staring at me with a sharp cutlass dangling from his waist, shining sharp vampire teeth, and rubbing his hands in glee😭😭😭.

…I got home only in time to pack the clothes. I wore shorts when I heard the car, flung off jewellery, threw my brand new teddy bear, Moschino perfume and other goodies under my bed, and claimed I was sweating furiously because I’d been exercising.

*wipes sweat off brows*

So… has Valentine ever gotten you in danger or trouble?

#DupeWrites #TheValentineSeries

Where’s HIS Gift?

Hey Beautiful!

If you expect a gift from HIM tomorrow then be ready to gift him too. Valentine’s is a celebration of love, yes? And love is two way street, still yes? Yes!👍

Does Beau say he doesn’t care about/want/need a gift? Don’t mind him. My folks will say foolish is using him to play ten-ten. You know, he’s being a tad silly. He wants a gift. Matter of fact, he’ll 😍😍😍😍 to get a token saying his love and what you share are cherished. Well, except he isn’t human. Because I know that you know that everyone knows every human likes to be appreciated🤩

Thanks for your understanding and anticipated cooperation

Nah. Your cookie eez nuh a gift. Stop eeeeeeet! Go out and get him something Girl!

#DupeWrites #TheValentineSeries

Unhitched? Perfect

She’s made for a boss

Only a boss

Anything less she’s telling them to get lost”


No, you’re not necessarily made for a Boss. To each her own, you know? So what’s your “own”? Have you decided?

Determine the kinda man you want, Woman. Don’t get inseparably entangled with the I-love-you-I-wantu-spoil-you valentine fellas. Also resist all the “yaaayyyy… he’s going to take me… he’s going to buy me” pressures to “just be with someone”.

You deserve your desired delicious partner Babe. I swear you do😘


#DupeWrites #TheValentineSeries #LifePlanning

Older Lovers and Giddy Foolishness (02)

So, back where we started:

Some people are only special because you bestow it on them.

Because of who or what you imagine their attention/affection makes you. And that’s not a bad thing in itself. Enjoy being seen, being validated. Enjoy the high. Recognise it as a simulated experience created by your mind, and use it to build yourself. Don’t sit hapless and get addicted to it.

No lover makes “you”.

You are YOU. Everything you ARE is within you. It always was. It always will be. No one can give you what is already within you. I hope you understand this as clearly as I do:

No one can give you what you already are

You need is to see yourself, recognise yourself, appreciate yourself. Lovers can sometimes help us see ourselves, yes; but they can NEVER give us to ourselves. Why? Because no one can give what they don’t have. YOU is only within you. A lover can’t possess it; let alone give it.

Some older people know the “power” they wield because of their ability to make younger people feel certain ways by their attention and affection. Some older people deliberately exploit this power to validate themselves and meet up to their self-beliefs of who they are.

Dear Friend, if a lover -however much older and juicier a romantic interest they are- threatens to leave you if you won’t bend to their will, leave them. Yes, you read me right. WALK AWAY. Say goodbye, see you later… however hard it might be. DO NOT enable a relational culture where you are defined by another person.  That’s the way to lose YOU. And you shouldn’t, shouldn’t ever lose you.

YOU is the only thing you have in this whole wide world that’s truly yours.

#DupeWrites #LifePlanning #DevComm #TheValentineSeries

Older Lovers and Giddy Foolishness (01)

That grown woman with curves like an hour glass and attitude like Madonna stroked my beard.
That senior boy… he said he likes me….

The romantic attention of older people often feels like validation: that you’re worthy, grown, mature, big… and other thoughts and emotions words can’t quite express right. Because why else would someone who has done more and seen more want you if there wasn’t more to just you; right?!

Sometimes it’s right that you’re so awesome it flies above the heads of everyone around you. Some other times there are just older people wielding power they do not have, through feelings they know their attention will evoke in you.

Did you understand that? Yes? No? Let me break it down with a story.

One day shortly after Secondary (High) School I was shopping at the Estate kiosk I favoured when a dude walked up, introduced himself to me; Chima.

He was cute, smooth talking, liked rap, tolerated my fixation with Back Street Boys, didn’t mind that I had a crush on the entire Boyz II Men crew, and walked with a bounce. He had one of those lips that Yorubas describe as elenu sujo bii obo adiye. You know, those lips shaped like an O as if in an eternal pout or kiss. They were dark at the edges and blushed into a rosy pink as they met. His face was sculpted fierce like you would imagine the image of strong African gods. When he smiled it was one of the most beautiful things, I swear.

I, on the other hand, was tiny, pretty bookish, more tomboy than female, and the major shareholding colour in my wardrobe was black. I was pretty intelligent, but at that age nobody cared about your head because, sincerely, the only thing it was useful for was winning boring prizes.  To make my matters worse, I was a clumsy klutz. If there was a 0.0001% probability that a stone will trip someone, best believe I’ll be the person to be tripped by the darn stone. And it’ll most likely be on a day I’m wearing Disney panties or some other uncool, absolutely outdated and horrifying underwear.

I wasn’t the girl most people voluntarily gravitated towards. Matter of fact, until SS2 and 3 when intelligence became a social currency, I had been one of those that simply hanging around me could drop your social points some notches.

But he liked me! University student, handsome Estate big boy Chima LIKED MEEEEE! Holy Jesus Mary and Joseph!! The stars still shine!!!

Of course I was overjoyed! I started walking like Princess Diana and Queen Elizabeth rolled into one personality. I became very confident, was often happy and became more social. It was beautiful. Very very beautiful.

Then one day Chima said he wanted to sleep with me.

Enh? You say what?

* * *

Admission into the University of Ibadan saved me, I suspect. Many months later however, I found out that Chima wasn’t really “all that”. Matter of fact, that was his M.O. He sought fresh-from-school girls, made them feel special, and seduced them. Maybe for that reason or because he was quite short (vain girls, no love for brothers of the brief species out here), broke, and not very academically solid, girls his age were not “into” him.

to be continued

#DupeWrites #LifePlanning #TheValentineSeries #DevComm

Steer Your Love Wheel

Your life is beautiful; whether or not you know it now.

Don’t drive yourself crazy trying to bring someone into your life, or keep them in it. Don’t! Absolutely do not!

The only person that’s core to your life, the bad ass actor, is YOU. And you can’t recognise, appreciate, rise to that responsibility, or do a good job of it if you’re busy chasing someone who, ultimately, doesn’t count.

If you feel compelled to “chase” somebody, use the energy to exercise instead.

Exercises make you feel good (by releasing feel-good hormones) and look good (who doesn’t want gorgeous toned muscles, enh?) , and doesn’t force or manipulate you to do things you wouldn’t rather do.

#DupeWrites #LifePlanning #TheValentineSeries

Who Should You Love?

What should I do on Valentine’s Day?

You imagine your decision will make or mar the rest of the year; perhaps the entire rest of your life. It’s the feast of love after all! The only day in the 355 day-calendar set aside to celebrate those we claim to love. So yes, it is big deal-ish.

So what should you be doing seven days from now?

Pretty simple, if you ask me. You should be loving yourself.

Yes, you read right. Why, you ask? Again, another simple question. The first person you should love above and beyond all else is YOU.

You put up with all your drama, fears, cares, distractions, insecurities and work yourself to success. You are your own most important, live-in, 24/7 lover. And Valentine’s Day is good time as any to acknowledge, reaffirm, and celebrate that love.

Whatever you plan for next Thursday, do not make any decisions that will counter your “self”.

Do not sign up for things that will hurt you, have negative consequences for you, or that you’ll have to create secret inaccessible paths in your mind to hide.

Love yourself. That’s the easiest manual to show your ‘Valentine’ and the world how to love you.

#DupeWrites #GirlChildLetters #LifePlanner #TalkThursday


Kuku’s Nest. Episode 04

“I want bras”

Mum studied my face to figure out if I was joking. I looked back at her matter of factly. Then she looked at my chest. There were two agbalumo seeds dotting it on the left and right. She stared at them, craning her head this way and that, perhaps wondering if there was an internal manifestation that had missed her naked eyes and casual glance. After what I thought was a sufficient forever she looked up at my face again.

“What do you want a bra for?”


I had two fleshy hills sitting on my previously drawing-board flat chest. I had breasts! Real. Live. Breasts! Bras were for breasts, my dorm girls had said.

Bras = breasts

Dupe = breasts

. · . Dupe = bras

It was too simple for Mum to still be asking what I wanted bras for! I mentally checked if I’d been a bad girl. Mum was obviously deliberately playing dumb to punish me for something. She did it often, drove me crazy so I could see how annoying it was when I drove her crazy. Tried hard as I did, my head said I’d been a good girl. A very good girl, in fact! I’d been buttering Mum and Dad up ahead of my new improved senior secondary school big-girl list.

My lips began to tremble.

“Ahh anhhh. Modupeola?”

Mum pulled me to her laps (nobody should say how I was claiming big girl yet went to Mum’s laps. I was still new at the “big” business mbok). I placed my head on her breasts. It was cushiony, so soothing, I forgot all about being big. This was Mum and I’s best posture for having the toughest conversations.

“All the girls brought bras during first term Mummy. Michelle used to give me one of her bras on Friday nights so I too could be among, but you always say I shouldn’t wear other people’s clothes so I thought you’ll want to buy me my own”

“Do you still like your singlets?”

“Not the long ones. They’re old school. I now like only the short ones”

“Okay. We’ll buy only the short ones but we won’t buy bras. Bras are for grown breasts, to support them. If you start using bras now your breasts won’t grow again. Do you want that?”

My jaw fell, horror screamed from my widened eyes. All my dorm girls had jugs. Not my agbalumo business but swingy jugs! I had dreams of growing to jug level too so the butt-of-small-boobs-jokes would stop being my portion.

I agreed with Mum quickly.

“Yes, singlets. I don’t want bras again. Bra is not good for me. Let’s buy many singlets.”

#MomentsAndMemories #AdolescentTales